Local Rev. 'Wowed' by New Pope Election
Rev. Jeffrey Dauses said the choice of Francis as the new Pope signals a time for change in the Catholic Church.
The election of Jorge Mario Bergoglio as the 266th Pope filled Rev. Jeffrey Dauses with joy and a sense of optimism for the Catholic Church, he said.
Dauses is the pastor at St. Andrew by the Bay Parish in Broadneck, and Patch caught up with him just moments after Bergoglio was announced as the new pontiff.
"Wow," Dauses said. "It's so unanticipated. Everybody who heard him and his first words as Pope had a sense of incredible joy and hope for future of the church."
Dauses said the choice of Francis as the new Pope's name reveals a bit about his character and his plans for the church. St. Francis was an Italian Catholic friar from the 12th century said to have been contacted by God to help rebuild the church.
"The fact he took that name really signals his desire to rebuild and strengthen the church, and the fact that he's from the third world is just amazing," Dauses said. "Catholics everywhere right now are filled with unbelievable optimism and hope."
Bergoglio hails from Argentina, and has long been a defender of the poor and downtrodden. A Pope from Latin America is quite a departure from the traditional European lineage of recent Popes. Dauses said that could be a strong indicator of things to come.
"That sends a clear signal from the cardinals that it's time for some radical re-thinking for the future. We can't do business as usual anymore," he said. "The church is facing a lot of struggles and challenges in the modern world. We need a leader who can really address those and confront them humbly with faith hope and prayer."
Dauses is the pastor at St. Andrew by the Bay in Broadneck, located at 701 College Parkway.